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Posted: April 29, 2009 12:30 a.m.

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Growing a good county

Photo by Amber Pittman/

Developer: Shannon Davis is the director of economic development for the Covington-Newton Chamber of Commerce.

Growing up Shannon Davis thought of Newton County as one thing only - a rival, as a student and cheerleader in Rockdale County. Now, however, she can't imagine being anywhere else.

"Everyone knew who you were, where you had been and pretty much where you were going," she said. "Covington is still a lot like that and I hope my kids will one day feel that special sense of belonging. My parents were always very involved in the community," she continued, "wanting to make it a better place for everyone. I think they passed that attitude on to me."

Davis is using her sense of community to excel at her role as director and primary contact for economic development at the Covington/Newton County Chamber of Commerce. Her job requires that she market the community to new and expanding businesses and work closely with the statewide economic development professionals to retain and expand the existing industrial base.

She also works with local land owners and developers to collect data on available buildings and land for marketing, she keeps track of the changes in demographics in the area and serves as a liaison between the existing industries and the agencies that can assist them and works to keep the city and county updated on the projects and activities happening in Newton County. Prior to joining the chamber, Davis worked with the county attorney's office and was involved in the development of projects for Stanton Springs Industrial Park.

"Covington/Newton is a wonderful place to live and play," she said. "It has tremendous potential to ‘grow the right way' right now. I'd like to try and help draw business to Stanton Springs, thereby helping the county with its tax base, and I'd like to continue to work closely with the city to draw good commercial growth to help keep our sales tax dollars local.

"We are all stewards of our community," she continued. "And we must take the extra time to be thoughtful about the decisions that we make and how they will one day affect the kids that are growing up here now."

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